Portfolio > Life in the Soil, Deep Earth Treatment Centre

Life in the Soil was a three-day event in March 2017 focused on creating dialogue with and between publics on intersecting issues in ecology. Workshops, performances, talks, and discussions were led by artists, activists, farmers, scientists, and scholars invested in the scientific, indigenous, embodied and practical knowledge about the vital nature of soils. Presented by The Deep Earth Treatment Centre (DETC) Amanda White and Alana Bartol, in collaboration with Jennifer Willet at the University of Windsor, School for Creative Arts. This work is funded by a SSHRC Insight grant.

:the act or process of remedying
1: a medicine, application, or treatment that relieves or cures a disease
2: something that corrects or counteracts
3: the legal means to recover a right or to prevent or obtain redress for a wrong

Soil Bed, was a participatory installation comprised of locally purchased commercial top-soil placed in a wooden frame the size of a queen bed (60 x 80 inches). Before the event, the DETC invited participants to collect a soil sample from a 'contested' site anywhere in the country. This was open to interpretation. From March 6-9, 2017 a small amount of each sample was mixed into the soil bed. Audiences and artists were invited to engage with and respond to the bed of soil through experimental gestures, actions, or exchanges as symbolic or actual steps towards remediation. Performances included sleeping on soil, performing reiki on soil, burying various objects, various type of contact with the soil (physical, emotional, and psychological), and an expecting mother reading to her unborn child.